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might as well throw this in here as well, even though e-petitions aren't really my thing
"e-petitions aren't really my thing".
Isn't a pardon the same as forgiving someone? Forgiving someone for being gay seems a bit insulting
I actually think the official explanation of the refusal to pardon (see below) is reasonable enough. It was obviously appalling that homosexuality was treated as a crime, and far more appalling still there were chemical treatments applied to 'correct' it. But I'm not really sure what a pardon would achieve. Some sort of statement from the government this week commemorating his work and acknowledging how badly homosexuals were treated would be nice but I don't think a pardon's necessary.
*A posthumous pardon was not considered appropriate as Alan Turing was properly convicted of what at the time was a criminal offence. He would have known that his offence was against the law and that he would be prosecuted. It is tragic that Alan Turing was convicted of an offence which now seems both cruel and absurd—particularly poignant given his outstanding contribution to the war effort. However, the law at the time required a prosecution and, as such, long-standing policy has been to accept that such convictions took place and, rather than trying to alter the historical context and to put right what cannot be put right, ensure instead that we never again return to those times.*
pardon everyone who has convicted, else it just another way of honouring someone in a a fairly meaningless manner, as you say...and the fact that the law has changed is pretty good...
so because the law was once an ass, we should silently accept that it was so and get on with our lives.
fucking hate heteros sometimes.
Which was that short of inventing a time machine, which seems fairly unlikely all things considered, there's not really a great deal we can do about how people were treated in the past. Except ensure the law stays changed and try to avoid similar things happening in the present.
As gamecat says, if you were going to pardon Alan Turing, you'd then really need to pardon everyone who was convinced of an offence related to homosexuality. Which'd be fair enough in theory but be a mammoth task and one that, after the event, wouldn't really achieve much in terms of removing all the pain and suffering of people involved, especially as most of them are no longer around to see it.
but this: "A posthumous pardon was not considered appropriate as Alan Turing was properly convicted of what at the time was a criminal offence. He would have known that his offence was against the law and that he would be prosecuted."
pretty clearly still brands him as a criminal. And that's never alright.
because he was "rightfully" (for want of a better word) convicted of what was then a crime. Sure, it looks bad if you deliberately take it out of context of the rest of the paragraph, but the line "rather than trying to alter the historical context and to put right what cannot be put right, ensure instead that we never again return to those times" sums it all up pretty well. A pardon would be a bit of an empty gesture, like trying to pretend it never happened. Surely that's a bit patronising?
but a pardon for one deserving individual who's given a lot to the thought and progress of his country, would act as a symbolic, if tokenistic gesture, to prove how far we've come. I'm not trying to make him some sort of reverse scapegoat so much as saying that it isn't an 'empty gesture'. I for one would be glad to see it.
Pigfoot's distinction between apology/pardon below is important.
What about everyone else?
the point is that it's still a meaningful, nice gesture. I do agree that the symbolism of 'pardoning' suggests a crime has been committed when that isn't the case, but I don't think that really matters as it's fairly obvious that the government's intentions would be good anyway.
At the risk of going on an unwanted political rant, this government's been very... sketchy on LGBT issues. Gay men were supposed to be allowed to give blood, which still hasn't happened, Cameron's associated himself with far-right homophobic groups in the EU and although he has said he has close gay friends he appears very uncertain as to his views on LGBT rights in interview. And that's not even mentioning gay marriage.
A pardon would prove that he and his administration have got some integrity and actually do care about the issues they claim to.
it's just a nice, respectful posthumous gesture to show that we've moved on as a society, and acts as a good token to show that homophobia won't be tolerated nowadays.
I don't choose my heroes based on their sexuality, though, tbh.
I kind of agree with the last line- it doesn't *really* matter. His life + work are the most important things.
olympic torch is going past the new statue at 6pm.
claim to fame
for bbc radio manchester radio station. she said: "errrrrrrrr....... no i'm sorry i've got no idea who that is"